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You’re surrounded by germs. (Not enough evidence) Some people hypothesize that CBD’s excellent immune-system soothing capabilities could accidentally let a few stray germs slip past your immune system’s defense. Scientists have tested this by exposing mice to the bacterium that causes Legionnaires’ disease and measuring their ability to fight the infection. Although moderate doses of CBD didn’t impair their immune systems, they were worse off on high doses equivalent to 1,000 mg for a 150lb person . If you’re currently taking higher doses of CBD and also sharing space with a bunch of coughing people, it might be a good idea to temporarily decrease your CBD dose.

You’re pregnant or breastfeeding. (Could be important) When pregnant or breastfeeding, a mother shares everything with her growing child. Active molecules in a mother’s bloodstream can pass into her child’s body through both the placenta and breast milk. Broad screening reveals that cannabinoids can be detected in the umbilical cords and stools of newborn children. And low levels of cannabinoids can be detected in breast milk from regular cannabis users . It’s currently uncertain if/how CBD affects a developing baby, but it’s safest to minimize exposure to cannabinoids (and a wide variety of other foods, products, and medications) while pregnant or breastfeeding. If you are currently pregnant or breastfeeding and use CBD to manage anxiety or another health issue, discuss the tradeoffs with a medical professional.

In the absence of definitive, slam-dunk clinical evidence, what the general CBD community does have to work with is a great deal of preliminary scientific evidence from laboratory experiments, animal models and case studies. Hundreds of scientific papers are published annually on cannabidiol, and the vast majority continue to point at CBD’s safety & efficacy for a wide range of conditions. This preliminary scientific evidence — from animal studies and human case studies — is what gets the ball rolling towards clinical trials.

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So yes, you may be jumping the gun by taking CBD to address a health issue when its use is not yet supported by clinical evidence that would pass muster with the FDA. But that clinical evidence won’t be available any time soon, and many people don’t want to wait a decade before finding out for themselves if CBD is effective for their needs.

You have low blood pressure. (Could be important) Some studies report that CBD lowers blood pressure, which could be a concern for people already dealing with low blood pressure. Overall, CBD appears most effective at reducing blood pressure during stressful events , which is widely embraced as one of its benefits. But CBD might also temporarily decrease your resting blood pressure as well. If you suffer from hypotension, you might want to monitor your blood pressure when trying new CBD products or increasing your dose. Are you the type that gets a bit light headed when you stand up suddenly? Just be a bit more cautious if you’ve just used a CBD vape pen or if you’ve been taking high oral doses of CBD.

Although CBD might be a new molecule to you, scientists have been studying it since the 1970’s, alongside its infamous sister molecule, THC. For the past few decades, lawyers, doctors, patients and politicians have all been pitting the medical potential of cannabis against its risk for recreational abuse. But all the while, evidence has been mounting that CBD offers similar — if not better — medical benefits without the downside of a “high” from THC.

CBD critics are absolutely correct when they state that definitive clinical evidence is lacking to recommend CBD for many of the reasons people currently take CBD products. CBD is currently available as an FDA-approved prescription treatment (called Epidiolex) for two rare forms of childhood epilepsy. But in order to gather the clinical evidence required for this status, the manufacturer needed to pay for almost two decades of research and clinical trials.

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Some CBD manufacturers have come under government scrutiny for wild, indefensible claims, such that CBD is a cure-all for cancer, which it is not. We need more research but CBD may be prove to be an option for managing anxiety, insomnia, and chronic pain. Without sufficient high-quality evidence in human studies we can’t pinpoint effective doses, and because CBD is currently is mostly available as an unregulated supplement, it’s difficult to know exactly what you are getting. If you decide to try CBD, talk with your doctor — if for no other reason than to make sure it won’t affect other medications you are taking.

CBD stands for cannabidiol. It is the second most prevalent of the active ingredients of cannabis (marijuana). While CBD is an essential component of medical marijuana, it is derived directly from the hemp plant, which is a cousin of the marijuana plant. While CBD is a component of marijuana (one of hundreds), by itself it does not cause a "high." According to a report from the World Health Organization, "In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential…. To date, there is no evidence of public health related problems associated with the use of pure CBD."

The bottom line on cannabidiol

CBD is readily obtainable in most parts of the United States, though its exact legal status is in flux. All 50 states have laws legalizing CBD with varying degrees of restriction, and while the federal government still considers CBD in the same class as marijuana, it doesn’t habitually enforce against it. In December 2015, the FDA eased the regulatory requirements to allow researchers to conduct CBD trials. Currently, many people obtain CBD online without a medical cannabis license. The government’s position on CBD is confusing, and depends in part on whether the CBD comes from hemp or marijuana. The legality of CBD is expected to change, as there is currently bipartisan consensus in Congress to make the hemp crop legal which would, for all intents and purposes, make CBD difficult to prohibit.

Side effects of CBD include nausea, fatigue and irritability. CBD can increase the level in your blood of the blood thinner coumadin, and it can raise levels of certain other medications in your blood by the exact same mechanism that grapefruit juice does. A significant safety concern with CBD is that it is primarily marketed and sold as a supplement, not a medication. Currently, the FDA does not regulate the safety and purity of dietary supplements. So, you cannot know for sure that the product you buy has active ingredients at the dose listed on the label. In addition, the product may contain other (unknown) elements. We also don’t know the most effective therapeutic dose of CBD for any particular medical condition.

Cannabidiol (CBD) has been recently covered in the media, and you may have even seen it as an add-in booster to your post-workout smoothie or morning coffee. What exactly is CBD? Why is it suddenly so popular?

CBD has been touted for a wide variety of health issues, but the strongest scientific evidence is for its effectiveness in treating some of the cruelest childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), which typically don’t respond to antiseizure medications. In numerous studies, CBD was able to reduce the number of seizures, and, in some cases, it was able to stop them altogether. Videos of the effects of CBD on these children and their seizures are readily available on the Internet for viewing, and they are quite striking. Recently the FDA approved the first ever cannabis-derived medicine for these conditions, Epidiolex, which contains CBD.